15 Zim firms exhibit in Moza ZimTrade official, Renwick Wachenyuka engages a potential buyer at the Maputo International Trade Fair where Zimbabwe, with 15 local firms exhibiting their products and services, is participating for the first time

Herald Correspondent

At least 15 Zimbabwean companies are showcasing their products and services at Mozambique’s largest annual trade, currently underway in Maputo.  

Facilitated by national trade development and promotion, ZimTrade, this is the first time Zimbabwe has had a pavilion at Maputo International Trade Fair (FACIM).

Participating companies are drawn from sectors such as processed foods, building and construction, fast-moving consumer goods, processed foods, clothing and textiles, and pharmaceuticals.

Other sectors represented are clothing and textiles, engineering, packaging, furniture, and agriculture inputs and implements.

According to ZimTrade communications manager, Danai Majaha, the trade exhibition – which opened yesterday and runs until September 4 2022 – is expected to increase the visibility of Zimbabwean products in Mozambique.

“The interest generated on the opening day reveals huge opportunities for diversified Zimbabwean products and services in Mozambique.  

“Riding on the positive comments that companies are receiving from potential buyers, especially on buyers, participating firms should make inroads into Maputo,” he said.

Mr Majaha said the participation of Zimbabwean companies at FACIM fell within the current export promotion drive by ZimTrade in regional markets.

“Our thrust is to ensure that local businesses unlock opportunities in markets across the continent, leveraging on existing bilateral trade agreements and the African Continental Free Trade Area.

“For example, Zimbabwe and Mozambique have a bilateral trade agreement in place, which seeks to eliminate tariff and non-tariff barriers and to cooperate in customs and trade promotion,” said Mr Majaha.

To ensure that participating companies maximise on the opportunity, ZimTrade has also organised for business-to-business meetings between participating companies and buyers from leading distributors in Mozambique, which will be held on the sidelines of the trade fair.

FACIM trade fair provides an opportunity for local companies to harness the good international relations the country holds as a result of re-engagement efforts by the Second Republic.

One of the exhibitors, the Tobacco Research Board (TRB), said FACIM has provided a launchpad for the expansion of its market for seeds and other agricultural products and services within Mozambique, the rest of the African market.

TRB head of business development and marketing, Mavis Nyakachiranje, said the quality of their horticulture and tobacco inputs offer high yields and efficiency that have been exciting potential buyers.

“We are using the quality of our hybrid seeds and other agro-based products, and their spinoff efficiencies as an entry into the Mozambican market,” she said.

Sales and marketing manager of Bulawayo-based Mealie Brand, Eunice Chivunga revealed that some buyers are keen on sourcing agricultural equipment from Zimbabwe.

“We have received positive comments on the quality of our products compared to the cheap brands currently available.

“Buyers are saying our products are robust and high quality compared to what is currently in the market.

“The market is promising as buyers are keen on sustained supply as they are targeting to distribute our products across Mozambique,” she said.

Triple Tee Footwear sales and marketing manager, Godknows Simbanegavi also said the fair will unlock access to the mining, construction, and manufacturing sector in Mozambique.

“FACIM has given us a platform to launch our products in the Mozambican market and other countries exhibiting at the trade fair.

“We are also benchmarking our products with other players in the market, and getting feedback on the requirements by potential buyers in the market,” said Mr. Simbanegavi.

A market survey conducted by ZimTrade in Maputo Province, Mozambique, last year discovered potential in sectors such as processed foods, building and construction, agricultural inputs and implements, horticulture, and services.

For example, Mozambique is heavily dependent on imports for most of its processed foods, home electricals, toiletries, and detergents and other FMCG categories.

Further opportunities are in the agriculture sector where Zimbabwe has an advanced sector that can meet most requirements in the market.

Another opportunity in the sector is provision of agricultural skills and expertise as well as quality seeds.

Zimbabwean companies have the potential to supply products like seeds, chemicals, treated poles for fencing, tractor drawn implements, hand tools, chemicals and fertilisers among others. There is potential for Zimbabwean companies to embark on seed production and supply the market with other seed varieties.

Since the greater part of farmers in Mozambique are based in the rural areas, hand tools (hoes, ploughs, cultivators) as well as ox-drawn implements have great potential.

In addition, the construction and engineering sector of Mozambique has vast opportunities for Zimbabwean businesses.

The current construction  of projects in Mozambique have created direct and indirect business opportunities with the most significant opportunities for Zimbabwean companies being supply of materials and related services.

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